Wayanad Member of Parliament and former Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Tuesday said that leaking sensitive information related to national security and military strategy to carry out attacks on enemy targets to a journalist is a “criminal act” and persons responsible for this should be put in prison.

Rahul Gandhi was answering a question about the alleged chat in which the Balakot airstrike, carried out by the Indian Air Force (IAF) on February 26 2019, to avenge February 14, 2019, Pulwama terror strike on a CRPF convoy in which more than 40 soldiers were slaughtered.

“Leaking of any sensitive information is a criminal act. This applies to the person who sends it and the person who receives it,” said Rahul Gandhi adding that such a sensitive issue was a subject of the national secret regarding a planned air strike which is only either with the Prime Minister, Union Home Minister, Union Defence Minister, Indian Air Force Chief and the National Security Advisor.

“I want to know who among the Prime Minister, Home Minister, Defence Minister or NSA leaked secret information to the journalist. This is a criminal act. If the journalist had such information on his WhatsApp, I assume the Pakistanis too had it,” he said.

He also said that by leaking such information to a journalist risked the IAF fighter jets and pilots and this was not an act of “patriotism”. He also said for leaking such classified information, the process of putting the people in prison should start.

On the issue of farmers’ protest, Rahul Gandhi asserted that Congress is supporting farmers against the new farm laws which are “designed to destroy agriculture”.

He also said that he’s “not scared of Narendra Modi or anyone”.

(With IANS inputs)